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What Is A Coaxial Cable and What Does It Do?

A coaxial cable or a coax is a type of cable that is used as transmission lines for radio frequency, video, and data signals. Traditionally, they have been used as feed lines to connect transmitters and receivers with antennas, internet connections, digital audio and cable television signals. 

This is why such cables are used in almost every home for television and internet connections, as well as in industrial settings for Local Area Networks. It is one of the most preferred types of cable because of its shielding and resistance to signal interferences from motors and other electronic equipment. 

It has multiple layers namely an inner conductor, an insulating layer, a conductive shielding and an insulating outer jacket. Most coaxial cables even have outer jackets that are UV, chemical, halogen and flame resistant, making it the best option, even for industrial settings. Its shielded design even allows for quick data transmission without succumbing to the interference or damage from outside or environmental factors.

They work by carrying data into the centre conductor while the surrounding layers of shielding (which is collectively known as the shield, restrict any attenuation loss and help reduce EMI. The first layer, meanwhile, provides distance and insulation between the core conductor and the outer layers. 

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What Does A Coaxial Cable Look Like?

Coax cables have a distinct thick, round shape due to its interior insulation layer. Because of its size, its look also differs significantly from other cable types. 

Coaxial cables come in many sizes, but the most common sizes are the RG-59, RG-11, and RG-6 cables. For non-industrial use, the most common coax cable used is the RG6 cable, while industrial installers, on the other hand, may use thicker cables like the RG11.

As for the colour, a coaxial cable normally comes in black, white or brown. 

Coaxial Cable Types and What Exactly They Are Used For

As mentioned above, coax cables are classified by their sizes. Here is a quick overview of what each coax cable type is used for. 

  • RG-6 Coaxial Cables – RG6 cables are ideal for television, the internet, and digital video. Because RG-6 cables are made with a different kind of shielding and have an impedance of 75 Ohm, they can carry GHz signals more effectively, making them best for tv aerials or domestic television, internet connections, and digital video signals.
  • RG-11 Coaxial Cables – Such cables are best used for HDTV. Because it offers a higher gauge which provides more space for signals to transfer, it is adept at transferring strong HD signals at high speed. It is also often used as a long-length backbone cable. End-users of RG-11 coax cables benefit from higher signal quality not just for TV, cable, and internet transmission.
  • RG-59 Coaxial Cables – This kind of cable is best for CCTV systems. While RG6 cables can run longer distances without loss to video signal, RG-59 cables are much convenient to work with. 
  • RF Coaxial Cables – An RF or Radio Frequency coaxial cable is used to carry radio frequency signals. These cables are the standard input cable on TV sets. It usually has a coax plug or pin, which you can simply plug to the RF input on the device. 

Coaxial Cable Connectors, Coaxial Splitters and Coaxial Ports

Cable Connectors

Coaxial cable connectors are used to connect your coax cable to another device while maintaining its shielding. These connectors could be classified into male or female. Male connectors have metal pins which protrude from the centre, while female connectors have a recessed hole where the pin is plugged into. 

These connectors are used for RF equipment, test instruments, radio, television and video signal, mobile phone connections, broadcast communications systems and many more. 

Coaxial Splitters

Because coaxial cable lines are produced to provide a signal to power a singular device, you will encounter a problem if you try using it to power more than one device. Coaxial splitters are used when there is more than one device that requires a signal. True to its name, it is designed to split the signal from one coaxial cable towards several lines to connect to multiple devices. 

Coaxial Ports

A coax port is a single female RCA connector on a device. It will most likely be labelled as “coaxial,” “digital out” or “digital in.” This port is usually colour-coded orange or black, where a male coax is to be plugged in. 

The Advantages and Disadvantages of Coaxial Cables

Coaxial cables are pretty advantageous. Such cables are inexpensive compared to fibre optic cables, durable, easy to install, and easy to expand with a cable extension kit. Additionally, coax cables have good resistance to EMI and RFI, lower error rates, as well as a transfer capacity of approximately 10mbps. 

Moreover, coaxial cables are beneficial for both analogue and digital transmission, as compared to twisted pair cables and fibre optic cables, which are only capable of supporting analogue and digital, respectively.

However, coaxial cables still have a few drawbacks. Some of which come to mind are its susceptibility to total system or network failure, bulkiness, stiffness, and vulnerability to security breaches. 

Final Thoughts

Now that you’ve got a much clearer understanding on what a coaxial cable is for, you’re probably ready to start on that DIY project that has got you looking up coaxial cables in the first place. However, if you are planning on installing a TV aerial, setting up a CCTV system in your home, or simply looking to extend your tv broadband, it would probably much safer for you to put the coaxial cable down and let the professionals work on it. This will not only ensure your safety but also save you all the frustration of trying to get everything done yourself!

Determining The Best TV Aerial For Your Home

A coaxial cable or a coax is a type of cable that is used as transmission lines for radio frequency, video, and data signals. Traditionally, they have been used as feed lines to connect transmitters and receivers with antennas, internet connections, digital audio and cable television signals. 

This is why such cables are used in almost every home for television and internet connections, as well as in industrial settings for Local Area Networks. It is one of the most preferred types of cable because of its shielding and resistance to signal interferences from motors and other electronic equipment. 

It has multiple layers namely an inner conductor, an insulating layer, a conductive shielding and an insulating outer jacket. Most coaxial cables even have outer jackets that are UV, chemical, halogen and flame resistant, making it the best option, even for industrial settings. Its shielded design even allows for quick data transmission without succumbing to the interference or damage from outside or environmental factors.

They work by carrying data into the centre conductor while the surrounding layers of shielding (which is collectively known as the shield, restrict any attenuation loss and help reduce EMI. The first layer, meanwhile, provides distance and insulation between the core conductor and the outer layers. 

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We rely on television for more than just entertainment. It is also a source of knowledge and information. That is why it is of utmost importance that we get the best TV signal possible. And that’s probably why you’re here: to find out what kind of TV aerial you need exactly in order to get the most out of your TV viewing experience. 

Nowadays, an HD TV or a smart TV already has a built-in Freeview TV tuner, which means it is much easier for TVs to access a wide range of channels, including HD channels when you have a Freeview HDTV subscription. However, because many still struggle to get good reception in their home, people find the need for additional TV aerials.

If you’re wondering what the best TV aerial is for you to get crystal clear picture quality, then you should know that it is not as simple as choosing what would be deemed “the best” by the market. Your location, the physical limitations of your home, and distance from the nearest TV transmitter towers or broadcast towers also play a part in determining what kind of aerial you will need specifically. 

That means you cannot only choose what kind of aerial you would prefer to use. It would, instead, depend on requirements that are unique to every hob. 

However, to put things simply, there are only three kinds of aerials for you to choose from:  Indoor TV aerials, outdoor TV aerials, and loft TV aerials. When would you need each kind of aerial, exactly? 

We’ve come up with a guide to help you figure it out! 

Indoor Aerials

Do you live within a 15-mile radius of a TV transmitter? If so, then you should be using an indoor tv antenna. Indoor digital aerials ensure the best possible reception for your TV, even with weak signals or bad signals. 

Indoor aerials are also best for areas which do not allow for aerial access, those that do not have enough space for rooftop aerials, and those that already have outdoor aerials lined up for another TV set.

Such aerials come in various shapes and sizes, but the one thing you will need to do to help improve the picture quality on your TV is by angling it or polarising it to match the Freeview TV signal that’s already being transmitted to your home. That is why you will have to make sure to take a look at the rooftop aerials in your neighbourhood to find out if you will need to horizontally or vertically polarise your indoor aerial for digital TV. 

Thinking of getting an indoor TV antenna to give your TV reception a boost? If so, here are the kinds of indoor antennas that you may choose from:

  • Monopole or Rod Aerials

This kind of aerial is omnidirectional, which means you can position it vertically or horizontally. 

  • Log Periodic Aerials

These are best for picking up weaker signals but will need to be positioned towards the transmitter. 

  • Loop Aerials

Such aerials are positioned on top of your TV. While these kinds of antennae are omnidirectional, chances are they will still struggle with weaker signals. 

  • Flat Panel or Patch Aerials 

By merely attaching these to a window or a wall, you may be able to absorb strong signals. However, the reception will still depend on how you position the aerial. 

Moreover, an amplified indoor aerial, or to put it simply, an aerial with a signal booster marginally increases the likelihood of picking up medium or low signal strengths, as compared to nonamplified aerials. 

Also take note that sometimes, signal boosters can cause picture interference. This usually happens when the aerial is placed too close to the TV or the set-top box. 

Outdoor Aerials 

If you are located within the 15-mile to 30-mile radius of a TV transmitter, then it would be best for you to use outdoor aerials or rooftop aerials. Such aerials are designed to withstand extreme weather conditions, so you wouldn’t have to worry about it breaking down because of a storm or strong winds. 

Additionally, outdoor TV antennas are best for receiving TV signals because being positioned at a height gives such aerials a better line of sight to the nearest transmitters or broadcast towers and with fewer obstructions like trees, buildings, walls, roofing materials, and many more. 

This, however, will require you or a professional to install and position your outdoor digital TV aerial on the roof. Many aerials for Freeview are outdoor antennas that are made with high-quality materials that are easy to mount. 

If you think you are better off using outdoor aerials, here are some types you may want to consider using:

  • Yagi TV Aerials

This type of aerial is most common in the UK and Ireland. It is a directional antenna which puts out a high gain, making it ideal for receiving lower strength signals. It has a relatively good range and filters signal noise.

  • Log Periodic Aerials

Such aerials are popular for digital TV. They reject impulse noises which could cause your TV signal to pixelate and break up. Because this aerial delivers a very flat frequency response, it is perfect for balancing TV signals.

  • High Gain Aerials

This type of aerial is designed to increase the signal strength received from a tv transmitter, thus helping it deliver more signal. This is best used in places with weak signals or in good signal areas where the signal is to be distributed between multiple TV sets.

Loft Aerials

Loft Aerials are starting to gain popularity as owners of new, modern houses opt to position their aerials in an area where it will not ruin their home’s aesthetic. An aerial like this will give you the best of both worlds as it will not ruin your home’s aesthetic and also make sure that you get crystal clear picture quality almost all the time. 

It is, however, essential to note that due to the building materials in your loft or attic, it is possible to lose some signal strength. The range could be lowered by 10-15 miles, so consider getting one of those amplified aerials or one with a broader range, and make sure to place your aerial at an optimal location. 

If you are looking for loft aerials, consider using an outdoor tv aerial for optimum results. 

Need help in finding or installing the best TV aerial for your home? Contact a professional aerial engineer today!

What To Do When There’s No Sky Signal

Imagine this. You made sure to have all your chores finished just in time for your favourite TV programme. You make it to the living room with a bowl of chips, sit down on the couch, and turn on the television. To your horror, your Sky box shows the words: “Sky No signal.” In only a few moments, your show will have started, and your Sky box won’t be available to record the video. What do you do? While you may try contacting Sky for an engineer, we know from experience that they might not be able to visit you until a few days later. You need your signal fixed immediately.

There’s good news waiting for you: you don’t have to tear your hair out because there’s no sky signal. And the even better news is that you can troubleshoot your Sky box without having to wait for a technician.

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Diagnose the Problem

There are a lot of reasons as to why your Sky box has no signal on tv. If the weather is bad in your area or if you hear the wind howling outside, this will definitely reduce the quality of your sound and image. We recommend waiting out the storm until testing your system’s satellite signal again. If weather conditions are favourable, try changing the channel and see if your Sky box still doesn’t have a satellite signal. Should the other channels work fine, you can wait a few minutes before going back to the previous channel; but if things still aren’t looking great, then your network coverage might have a problem.

Check your service status. You can also send them a message if you have their contact details. If there happens to be a network outage in your area, we recommend waiting that out, as well. If there are no such reports of Sky being unable to provide satellite signal, reboot your Sky box and check if any of the cables are loose. These are the basic techniques that generally save a lot of time and solve the majority of signal problems with Sky.

Resetting your Sky Box

Click the ‘Standby’ button on your remote. If your model has PVR or recording capability, you will need to wait for the hard drive to stop spinning for a short while. Once it ends, you may switch off your Sky box, your TV, and other devices that are connected to it. You will also need to switch off your mains and disconnect your Sky box.

Take note: When inspecting it, make sure not to take the small plug out of the power socket at the back of the device. When the power is on, take care not to touch the plug as this can cause damage to the internal circuits, and an internal fuse may fry up.

Look for the HDMI and SCART cables attached at the Skybox’s rear. All of these should be firmly attached to both the television and the Skybox. After tightening connections, wait for five minutes before switching everything back on. This allows the capacitors inside the satellite receiver to completely discharge and cool down. There will be times that your satellite receiver freezes and an excellent way to break this is to do a complete reboot. After turning it back on, you might notice that the Sky logo will flash across the screen. This is the start of the initialisation process. Make sure to wait for a few minutes before trying to change the channel to prevent the Sky box from being overloaded with commands.

Correcting your TV Source

If the words ‘No Signal’ are coming from your television screen and not your Sky box, check the cables once again. This could mean that your Sky box is working correctly, but your cables are not configured properly. If this is the case, double-check if your Sky box is on, with the green light showing. Then go to your handset and press ‘TV’ and then ‘Help’. If the handset is not configured to your TV, you will have to your television’s handset instead. Look for the words source, input, or AV. Depending on the manufacturer, this should lead you to the input settings for your Sky box. Keep rotating through the input options until you find Sky TV. This will hopefully restore your television’s audio and video.

Making sure your subscription is active

If your subscription-based TV services are not working, but terrestrial-free-to-air services are, you will need to check your subscription. Go to your Sky box and check the viewing card inserted in it and the viewing card paired with it.

Your viewing experience relies on a lot of devices. While it may seem daunting at first, doing these basic troubleshooting techniques will save you some money. However, when the time comes that you will need professional help, be sure to contact us and we’ll be there to assist.

How To Use A TV Aerial Splitter

Let’s clear something up. A lot of people often use the terms “aerial” and “antenna” interchangeably. While we know it can be confusing, these two objects are not the same. The antenna’s job is to transmit radio waves. An aerial’s job, such as the satellite dish sitting on top of roofs, are only receptors of television signals and not transmitters.

Another example of a receptor is the aerial used for car radios. All TV sets used to have aerials on them before cable and satellite televisions were released to the market. While they used to be made of wires that are cut to a specific length, they are not made with aluminium tubing to support them on roofs.

When installing aerials in your home, whether the traditional wires or the satellite dishes, people tend to put one for each TV in the house. If you go around your neighbourhood, you will find a lot of properties sporting multiple—old and new ones—on their roofs. The good news is you can run numerous TVs off of one aerial and not need dozens. The not-so-bad news is you will need to order a TV aerial splitter.

In theory, the signals your aerial receives can be amplified and split for different TVs–and they can be split up for as much as you need. If you notice the flats in your area, they connect a multi-switch system to a single aerial, split up the signal and amplify it for their respective televisions. In some cases, you won’t even need to increase the signal with amplifiers.

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How do I split my aerial?

It’s time to clear your roof of its extra aerials and keep the latest model standing. There are two ways to distribute your signal to multiple TV sets:

1. Get a TV Aerial splitter

These can range from the T- or Y-shaped TV Aerial splitter that has two outputs up to the sixteen-way splitter with metal spikes protruding from a plastic centre. One of the spokes serves as the input where the signal enters and then splits to each output port. Depending on the strength of your signal, you can connect, however, many TV sets you want to. The price of a few Aerial splitters is only a few pounds, at most, a small amount for the ability to watch TV in multiple rooms

But there is a caution to the tale: the more times the signal is split, the quality of the image and sound lessens. A lot of splitter manufacturers will print how much signal reception is expected to come out of that port. In this case, using amplifiers or aerial boosters may help. This means if you have, say, five available TV sets connected to your aerial when the signal is already weak, your device needing the strongest signal should be plugged in the port with higher output. If, however, most of your devices need strong signals, then you have more to lose than to gain. Splitters can only do so much. This brings us to the next option.

2. Use an amplified splitter or booster

Should you choose to get amplifiers for your TV, the signal that leaves, it will be more reliable than when it entered. Comparing this to passive splitters, they rely on electrical currents to function. These are usually placed in a loft or basement, where the cables run throughout the home and feed high-quality signal for every TV.

If you don’t have a power supply available in your basement, you can install a masthead or line-powered version. This involves installing a power supply at one of the TV set, allowing it to send about 12V to amplify the cord that feeds its signals.

For households, we recommend keeping to your aerial splitter. For most of the installations we’ve handled, the signals were strong enough to power two to three TV sets in the home without needing an amplifier. If your apartment houses 30 appliances, then that could be another story. Getting an amplifier will also mean an increased noise figure, causing more signal glitches and higher changes of system breakdown.

If you plan on upgrading your system entirely, we recommend getting an LNB with a higher gain so that your satellite dish can receive better signals.

Once you have a splitter for the aerial on your roof, whether amplified or not, you are not only saving money, but you are also lessening the burden on your roof (physically and metaphorically speaking, that is).

Installing and repairing TV aerials is our expertise. We can provide the best advice and assistance so your home can receive a strong Freeview signal. Give us a call here.

A Definitive How-To on Aerial Boosters: Can They Really Boost the TV Signal? Let’s Find Out!

tv signal booster

In the line of all the uni-taskers, “As Seen On TV” products, and hardware hard sells, how about this time we shine a light on debunking another superfluous claim for a miracle product and find out if it really works! So the catch here is, would installing signal amplifiers or a TV aerial booster really improve the signal? Let’s jump on the textbooks and find out. 

A usual claim would be that it’s “faulty” or a “scam,” but what people fail to realize is that these instruments are highly functional when you figure out how to use it properly. The placement and timing are crucial. For example, if you try and summon the power of a TV aerial booster box for a network of communal TV systems or multiple TVs in your household, the throughput might just not cut it. This would always depend on the TV signal booster that you have purchased. If this is the case, might as well find out if it works and how it works. 

How does a TV Signal Booster work?

The principle here is every straightforward no matter what type, brand or model: an aerial TV booster will chew up your signal as input and spit it out stronger or less weak as an output. The problem is, the “boosting process” does not totally come out from nowhere; it does not beat the third law of thermodynamics. A usual occurrence and problem in these things are that when the aerial signal is amplified, other things around it are also amplified. This is usually unnecessary stuff you don’t want such as radio signals from another transmitter, interference, or electrical noise so it wouldn’t be best to install one if you don’t really need it. A problem only usually comes up with aerial signal boosters when you settle for knock-offs or a cheap indoor tv aerial booster. For best results, go for reliable manufacturers of only the best tv signal booster and best tv aerial signal booster such as Triax, Televes, Wolsey, Vision, or Antiference

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When Do You Know You Need A TV Signal Booster?

I’m not particularly saying you shouldn’t buy a digital tv signal booster. What I’m pointing out is that you keep in mind the timing and placement of it. Again, it’s not a miracle worker that randomly fixes your TV signal when you plug it in, nor can it suddenly make the signal from the source work better for you. A usual spot where things go wrong is through the cables; either it’s too long, and you’re losing it to the coaxial cable or you split it to too many devices that the signal gets too cut off. In these cases, it would be best to amplify from the source rather than near the device. A stronger push would lead to a clearer output, hence making it work out in the end. 

Making More From Giving Out More: Overcoming Losses in Splitting

It’s pretty logical how throughput kills all the fun in this situation: the more TVs you source from one signal, the worse the signal you get for each unit. Do note, it doesn’t matter if it’s not all on or connected at the same time: as long as you’re using a signal splitter or a cheap TV link, you will have some problems in terms of picture quality and signal strength. In this case, it is highly recommended that you purchase yourself a digital tv aerial booster. Help yourself out a little on this. 

So, How Would You Install A Signal Booster Properly?

A big hassle on how to use a tv signal booster aerial amplifier would be its need for power or current. If you would install it from the source of the signal, wherever is that it usually does not have an available nor accessible power outlet. So your best bet for this is to have an electrician make things happen and work for you. Or you may also opt for the masthead tv amplifier that sources the power from the coaxial cable itself, making the cabling cleaner and the entire conundrum less of a hassle. It would be better because it can amplify a cleaner source of the signal given that it can be installed nearer to the source, making up for a stronger result. 

Common Problems In Using Boosters

Just when you thought it couldn’t go wrong, it goes wrong. Read through for forward-thinking preventive measures.

  • A Lot Of Signal

The math here is simple folks: There is such a thing as amplifying the signal too much. If it’s too amplified, there’s too much aerial signal, the system overloads. Effects on your TV would be pixelation, blocky images, a high noise figure, or complete signal loss. 

Whether you’re using a signal booster for tv, an aerial signal booster, or an indoor digital aerial signal booster, too much of it is going to cause you more problems rather than improve your picture quality. 

Extremely Amplified Signal Strength = Not Good

  • Wrong Signal Strengthened

Your booster can pick up radio signals from other transmitters in the area or even interferences such as tetra, 4G or 5G. In such cases, it would be wise to manually tune the television instead of an auto scan and using a built in 4G filter that blocks unwanted signals. The same goes for those who have a separate TV and 4G device. 

  • Massive Overlooks

You should never forget that the booster needs electricity or current to run. A common mistake would be to overlook the simplest source of the problem: sometimes it’s just really that the power supply is broken or unplugged.

Also, make sure everything is tightly connected to your TV or home cinema system. Any loose connections will no doubt mess with your TV reception.

  • Filtering Problems

Channels are usually separated by differences in signal. The further you go usually leads to a more obscure type of signal that may be considered interference by an installed filter with the booster. 

Final Thoughts and Verdict

It really does work, albeit not perfectly. Any solution to a common problem is always relative and highly dependent on the current environment of the set-up. With a little bit of tinkering and a quick skim on this article, you’ll do just fine. However, if you think you need the help, do not hesitate to call for a professional to help you out.

A Safety Guide On Installing A Wall Mounted TV

tv installation

Nowadays, almost every home has a wall mounted TV in the living room, home office, or bedroom. More than it being a way to save up on some adequate floor space due to the absence of TV stands, and the like, wall-mounted TVs often represent cleanliness and minimalism in the home. However, people often forget to implement some safety measures that will make sure nobody gets hurt, and nothing gets damaged during and after mounting a TV on the wall. 

To help you better understand and minimize the risks of having a wall-mounted TV, here is a list of things you should remember while installing one:

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  • Consider the location

Before you even start drilling holes into the walls of your home, figure out if the location you’re considering is ideal. Take into consideration things such as viewing angles, sun exposure, space, and even proximity to the power outlet. Such considerations will help prevent overheating, future occurrences of sore necks, and space-related and power cord-related accidents. Mount your TV at a place where it is cool, safe, and out of bumping distance. Also make sure to place it at a height where the TV screen is at eye level, or at least close to it. 

  • Find out if your wall can handle holding the TV up and make sure you are using the correct anchor

To ensure that your hard-earned money does not go to waste, check if your designated TV wall can carry the weight of your TV. Keep in mind that TV size is directly proportional to your TV’s weight. This means the bigger your TV is, the heavier it will be. So, make sure to check if the material of your wall is sturdy enough to carry your new TV, and that your wall mount is made for the specific size and weight of your TV. Also take note of what type of wall you are mounting on, as there are specific wall anchors needed for each:

  • If you are planning on mounting your TV on concrete or brick, attach the wall bracket or wall mount with a sleeve or wedge anchor. Such anchors are not very difficult to find, as you may simply purchase them at any hardware store. If you’re on the hunt for deals on prices, you may also opt to buy online. Once secure, you may hang your TV onto the bracket.
  • Meanwhile, if you’re mounting on drywall, make sure to anchor your bracket or wall mount onto the studs behind your wall before attaching your TV onto the bracket. If your wall has no studs, anchor the TV bracket using toggle bolts. 

Note: To find the studs, you may use stud finders or knock on your wall until you hear a solid sound. Hollow wall sounds mean there are no studs behind it. Make sure you are not drilling into water pipes, gas pipes, and electrical wiring. 

In this video, LRN2DIY, a YouTube channel specializing in how-to videos, demonstrates how to mount a TV onto drywall.

  • Conceal your cords and cables

Aside from it being unsightly and messy, cords and cables left exposed can be quite dangerous. Because these cords and cables are left dangling and lying around, it is possible for it to come in contact with spilt liquids. Unconcealed cords may also be cause for accidents involving kids and adults alike. To prevent such accidents and occurrences, you may hide your wires or cords behind the walls using a power relocation kit. You may also choose to mount your TV in front of a power outlet or add a power outlet behind your TV to keep it from dangling. A paintable wire channel is also ideal in keeping your cords and cables tucked, tidy, and in order.

A tip: For electrical work such as rewiring and adding power outlets behind your TV, contact a professional. 

  • Make sure all ports are accessible

While you may not find an extra HDMI port necessary at the moment you’re mounting your TV, you may find a need for it in the future. The same goes for all input and output ports on your TV, including, but not limited to the USB, component, composite, VGA, antenna, and S-Video ports. 

Ports that are not fully accessible may cause damage to the jacks, wires, and cables being connected to them. Making sure that they are all accessible from the moment you mount your TV saves you the chore of unmounting and making access for such ports in the future when you find yourself wanting to connect DVD players, bluray players, a gaming console, smart home devices, home security devices, streaming devices, and many more.

  • Is it level?

Try and find out if your television is levelled and mounted properly. This, otherwise, could cause your TV to get dislodged or unmounted in the future. 

  • Can the kids reach it?

Kids reaching for and potentially knocking your TV off the wall mount when it is not properly secured can cause major accidents, or worse, death. It is therefore best to, aside from making sure the TV is mounted securely, mount the TV out of children’s reach.

  • Know what you’re doing

Do not, under any circumstances, attempt to mount your TV to the wall without doing some research on it. Aside from reading and understanding the buyer’s guide that comes with your TV and wall mount, you may also search for demonstration videos on the internet. What’s important is that you figure out just exactly what you’re doing before attempting to do it yourself. This could otherwise only put you and your TV in a lot of danger.

  • If in doubt, call a professional

If you think you can’t do it, don’t hesitate to call a professional. There will be installation costs and labour costs, no doubt, but those will definitely be less expensive than undoing any potential damage you may inflict on yourself, the people around you, your furniture, your appliances, and your home in the event that you are unable to complete the mounting job properly. 

Do I Need An Aerial For A Smart TV

smart tv

You’re moving into your new house. One of the first things that you should buy is furniture and appliances. You have to make the difficult choice between quality or price. However, when it comes to buying items for your home, the thing that you have to consider is its functionality. There would be no use to buying a cheap item when you can’t use it for your everyday life.

Regardless of the price, it still is an unnecessary expense. On the other hand, a sala set worth £1, 400, despite being labelled as frivolous, can be considered a practical purchase if it’s used a lot of times.

This mindset also applies to your appliances. If you buy a brand new, top-of-the-line smart TV, the functionality should be the main issue. How much did your Smart HD TV cost you? £ 400? £ 550? Maybe you finally got that bonus, and you decided to splurge. And now you have gone home with a smart TV worth £ 2000. Now what?

What exactly do you do with a £2000-Smart TV? For most of us, having a colossal flatscreen HD TV is the dream. You can spend the rest of your nights, relaxing in front of your screen, watching your favourite shows to your heart’s content. But how exactly can you watch on your Smart TV?

One interesting statistic is that many believe that buying a TV is enough. Once they have plugged in their Smart TV, they can already watch whatever show they want. Right? Nope. There are various ways that you can employ to make sure that your Smart TV becomes good to use. 

I have listed the five most common methods to use their Smart TV.

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We now live in the age of streaming. Many even posit that the rise of streaming services spells the death of cable. This could hold true for many reasons. Streaming companies such as Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu are services where you pay a monthly subscription fee in exchange for unlimited access to their content.

Each of these streaming sites has thousands of thousands of movies, TV shows, and documentaries for its subscribers to enjoy. You can spend whole months combing through just one section of their catalogue. Most Smart TVs already have these streaming apps built-in. 

All new models of Smart TVs can easily connect to the Internet through Wi-Fi or an Ethernet cable. If you’re happy with using your Smart TV for streaming, then you don’t have to read through the next part of this article. 

Aerial

The aerial or the antenna is perhaps one of the most traditional ways for a household to obtain reception. “Do I need a TV Aerial for my Smart TV?” Yes, you do. But only if you want to use your Smart TV to watch live TV. If you want to access Freeview in the UK, then you need a TV Aerial for your Smart TV. Freeview is a service that is delivered to your Television system only through a TV Aerial. You cannot watch TV like BBC1 and BBC2 without a TV Aerial to receive signals broadcasted by TV stations.

A TV Aerial Installation can quickly be done in less than a day. You can simply call your local aerial installers and have them hook you up with a working TV Aerial system. Aside from Freeview, your TV Aerial will also provide you access to BT Vision, EETV, TalkTalk TV, and Saorview provided that you paid for these subscription services.

Satellite Dish

The same holds true with Freesat. A satellite dish is required for your Digital TV to watch live TV through the UK Freesat service. Some of the paid services that you get access to are Sky, Soarsat, and international TV programs. If you don’t want to pay for a monthly subscription fee, then there is Freesat. 

A standard satellite dish installation will take less time than a TV Aerial Installation. It is also considered to be generally cheaper, although both of these care in the same price range. The main difference between a satellite dish and a TV Aerial, however, is that a satellite receiver (i.e. Freesat Box) is required to decode the satellite signals into watchable content. On the other hand, TV Aerials need to be installed from a much higher vantage point like the roof, which could be tricky if you live in an apartment.

Game Consoles

Of course, one of the most widely known uses of TVs is for gaming. Regardless of whether you own a Playstation, an Xbox, or a Nintendo Switch, your gaming experience will surely benefit from an HD Smart TV. With better graphics and image resolution, you get to immerse yourself more into the game. Just plug in your favourite game and enjoy!

Laptop

Lastly, you can easily connect your laptop using a VGA or HDMI wire to watch TV. Through this, you can watch a movie through a bigger screen. I can’t imagine a better way to enjoy Family night than lounging on the sofa with your family and watching a movie.

How Does Freesat Work?

Nowadays, entertainment has become such a massive part of people’s lives. We come home from work, school, or even just a day full of errands wanting just to lay down and chill in front of the telly. It’s always such a treat, getting to relax and unwind while watching your favourite TV show, re-watching your favourite movie, or even just browsing through the channels available via your cable subscription. However, as cable subscription prices rise, we consumers are left looking for ways to satisfy our need for TV without having to shell out enormous amounts. Amounts that would have otherwise been dedicated to paying for necessities like food, water, electricity, rent, etc. Fortunately, there are a few alternatives to expensive cable subscriptions. One of these alternatives is Freesat, a digital satellite TV service from the BBC and ITV which offers a ton for channels for free. 

Now, you may be asking, “How does Freesat work?” To answer your questions, we’ve come up with a list of things you should know about Freesat:

Getting Freesat

To receive Freesat service, you will need a satellite dish or satellite receiver. You don’t necessarily have to get a new one if you’ve already got an existing satellite dish installed. This is why many people who switch over to Freesat usually come from Sky Digital, which also delivers its service via a satellite dish. However, if you are switching from a service that does not use satellite dishes, you may have to pay to get one installed. 

Once you have a satellite dish, the next thing you will need is one of the following:

A Freesat-ready TV 

Some manufacturers already produce at least one kind of TV with Freesat built into it. With a Freesat-ready TV, you will be able to access channels and almost any radio station without the need for an additional device.

A Freesat (or Freesat+) Set Top Box

Freesat set top boxes and Freesat HD boxes cost somewhere between £50-£220, depending on which features you will want on your box. These set top boxes should be compatible with whatever flat-screen TV you own. Connect the set top box to your satellite feed and your TV via HDMI, and you’ll be good to go!

Freesat from Sky 

If you are already a Sky Digital subscriber and no longer want to pay for TV, you may consider switching over to this plan. Although you wouldn’t have access to the HD and Premium channels exclusive to Sky Digital, you will have more channels compared to the regular Freesat Digital service. Those with the regular Freesat Digital service may choose to upgrade by purchasing a viewing card from Sky Digital.

Costs

As stated above, Freesat is a free TV service. This means aside from the upfront costs such as the set top box purchase, fees for its installation, and if needed, installation costs for the satellite dish, you will not have to pay any monthly fees. 

Channels

Freesat has more than 200 channels with 20 of those on HD, when you get the Freesat HD Box or the Freesat 4K TV Box, among other models. You may access on-demand content from channels/streaming services such as Netflix, YouTube, BBC News, BBC Sport, My5, and many more. Freesat’s on-demand service, however, will require you to connect to your home broadband, and more preferably fibre broadband. 

Freesat also offers an eight-day program guide, helping you identify which shows you will want to watch live and which shows you will want to record with your Freesat+ box. 

Recording, Rewinding, Forwarding, and Pausing

If you have a Freesat-ready PVR, a Freesat+ Smart Box, you have the freedom to record programmes, as well as watch and re-watch them at any point.

Freeview vs Freesat

Freeview or Freesat? This debate has been going on for a long time. However, these two TV services are more different than alike. Their differences begin with the very fact that Freeview makes use of tv aerials to deliver their service, while Freesat makes use of satellite dishes or satellite receivers. Additionally, because of how their service is delivered, Freesat and Freeview’s coverage also differ significantly. Moreover, Freesat HD and Freeview HD differ in number, with the former almost doubling in the number of channels over the latter. 

This means rather than continuously trying to determine which of two is better, it all comes down to a question of “What does the consumer need?” Or better yet, “What do you need?” Consumers, like you, will have different needs and requirements based on their viewing habits, location, budget, current TV service provider, and many more. It is, therefore, advisable to figure out just exactly what exactly your household will require and enjoy more. 

How To Install A TV Signal Booster

tv signal

For countless years, watching television shows have become a common human activity. Whether it’s for watching the news, sports, or your favourite show, having clear signal reception is key. As the dependency for television grows, it is essential that your household is equipped with the right accoutrements to ensure a pleasurable watching experience.

Regardless if you’re watching from Freesat or through a paid subscription service, you want to make the most out of your limited telly time. Usually, when you get weak reception, the solution is to go to the shop and purchase a TV Signal booster. However, this could be an unnecessary expense given the following scenarios.

Poor reception can be caused by many things. It would be good if you try to fix these first before buying a TV Signal booster.

Obstructions

Obstructions such as buildings and trees act as a barrier and make it hard for your satellite dish to receive signal. Position your satellite dish away from these obstructions to provide your television with the optimal TV Reception.

Small Satellite Dish

There are cases when the satellite dish installed for your home does not suffice for your satellite dish requirements. The standard satellite dish size installed in most UK houses is 45 cm. However, in cases where the user is located far away, a bigger dish, up to 3 m in diameter may be required. This is so that residents in distant locations can still get TV reception.

Frayed Cables

Another reason why you may be experiencing a signal loss is due to frayed cables. Run a thorough check on your cables. Some may need to be replaced so you can enjoy watching your favourite TV show without any difficulty once again. 

Wrong Satellite Positioning (Azimuth)

Depending on your use of your TV and the shows that you watch, there are certain angles that you need to position your satellite dish. Here is a table on which angles are for which TV Services

 

Angle

Satellite

TV Service

28.2 E

Astra 2 Satellites

Freesat, Sky Subscription

28.5 E

Eurobird

Freesat, Sky Subscription

19.2 E

Astra 1 Satellites

French and German Shows

13 E

Hotbird

European and North African Regions

 

Once all of these has been fixed and you’re still getting an unstable signal strength, then it’s time to buy a TV booster. Installing the TV Signal Booster is another tricky part. Uninstalled properly, this will do nothing or worse, worsen your signal loss altogether.
In an ideal setting, hiring professionals would do the trick. They would come in, do a complete TV aerials installation or satellite dish installation, and guarantee a pleasurable watching experience. However, not only can Aerial signal boosters be expensive, in most cases, you can do it yourself without any difficulty. You just need the know-how.

Below is how to properly install a TV Signal Booster.

Step 1:

Identify a good spot in your television cable where you can install the booster. Don’t just choose a random spot. If you only have one Digital TV, then you can install the Digital TV Booster Amplifier near the Television. Don’t put it too close to the power supply though so it doesn’t create any issues. However, if you’re using the Booster Amplifier to boost multiple Digital TVs, it’s better to install the TV Booster near your distribution amplifiers or Antenna Line splitter.

Step 2:

Unscrew the cable from your Digital TV or distribution amplifiers. Connect a cable from your TV booster to your Digital TV ’s input or if you’re using distribution amplifiers, connect it there. Make sure that the connection is not too tight as this can lead to a shorter lifespan.

Step 3:

Connect the cable from the TV Aerial or Satellite Dish to your TV Booster. This will complete your setup as your HD Digital TV will now be reconnected to your Aerial or Satellite Dish and will be getting TV Reception once again.

Step 4:

Plug your TV Booster into the power supply to turn it on. This will provide amplify your Digital TV’s signal strength.

Step 5:

Get a bowl of crisps. Sit back. And spend hours watching on your Digital TV.

Factors That Affect Satellite Dish Installation Cost

Satellite Dish Fitting

Television. 

Telly. 

Idiot 

Box. 

The Tube. 

The Box.

Regardless of what you call it, there is no denying that it is definitely one of man’s greatest inventions. However, the watching experience is hampered when all that you are watching is static. Before you can lean back and start to relax in front of the telly, the first thing that you need to do is have a satellite installation.

This blog post will comprehensively discuss the several factors that affect the satellite dish installation cost. It’s best to be knowledgeable of all the information so you can ready your budget. Preparing enough cash for a tv aerial or satellite installation is necessary. 

There is a general price for the dish installation. You can contact your local tv aerial installers for a general quote. However, once they come to your property, there are several factors that may affect this pricing. The standard satellite cost covers a 45 cm Satellite Dish, a Quad LNB, 18-metre cable, and 1.5 hrs worth of labour for the installation.

Below are some of the variables that would affect the cost of your installation project.

If Satellite Dish Has To Be Installed Elsewhere

It is a general rule to install tv aerials on an elevated level. Usually, they are installed on the roof. However, there are cases when the roof is unavailable for any kind of installation. At the same time, direction and alignment have to be taken into account. If the roof is not in an optimal condition, then there are alternatives to it. Take note that there may be added costs to this as they would require extra work.

  • Chimney

The chimney is one of the more common alternative places for your satellite dish. A chimney installation will require a chimney stack and a chimney lashing kit. There are different techniques that aerial installers can employ. Make sure that the installers don’t use drill fixings if your chimney is old and in poor condition. This may create substantial damage to your property like bricks being ripped clean off of the house.

  • Mast and Brackets

Another method is to stick it on a mast and bracket. This will help give height and clearance needed to receive a signal. 

If A Larger Satellite Dish Is Required To Receive Optimal Reception

The standard size of the satellite dish is around 45 cm. There are locations, however, that may require a larger one. A bigger dish is necessary to ensure that you receive a better signal. For example, if you reside in the middle of the city, a standard-sized dish would suffice. However, if you live further north, the satellite’s strength grows weak and would require at least a 60 cm satellite dish. For extreme cases, a 1-metre satellite dish may be used.

If The Work Takes Longer Than The Expected Time

Generally, installation for licensed professionals will take less than two hours to finish. However, in the case of unforeseen circumstances i.e., difficulty with installation, it may take longer. The additional labour will cost you a few extra pounds as financial compensation to the installers.

Need for a Longer Cable

The general cable length that is part of the normal quote is 18 metres. However, in the case that the satellite dish requires more elevation, the cable needed would increase. Usually, companies would charge per metre.

If Your Property Is Difficult To Access

If your property is quite difficult to access or will cost the installers more than expected, then they will charge you for it. For example, parking fees and toll fees will fall under the responsibility of the household owner.

If Octo LNB, Sky Q, or Quattro LNB Is Needed

There are times when different equipment is needed that’s more advanced than the standard supplies. For instance, the cost will increase if your household would require an Octo LNB, a Sky Q, or a Quattro LNB. Because of these requirements, there may be a change in your normal quotation.

If Upgrade On Material Is Requested

The material on the dish satellite will also change the cost. While a regular satellite dish is enough for households in the city, households living near the sea may require a satellite dish made of sturdier material.